IMPORTANT ….. Don’t Be Fooled About Issue 2
There is a lot of confusion about Issue Two. The short history is that Secretary of State, Husted, took the Medina petition with 5,600 signatures for the right to vote locally, on issues that the citizens believed would violate their rights, off the November ballot. The Ohio Supreme Court told Mr. Husted that, no, he did not have that right to take the initiative of Medina or other communities off the ballot. (The Ohio Supreme Court denied it due to a small technicality, but corrected could go forth in 2016.)
This Issue is not about monopolies. We already have state and federal laws that disallow monopolies. (Just ask Microsoft and other corporations the feds have taken to court on what they believed was a corporation building monopolies.) It is a disguised amendment that will make the citizens rights to vote, or other community right efforts, nearly impossible to bring forth and maintain more power to the elite politicians, and corporations.
We are individuals and families just like you. We once believed we had a voice in America, but have found out that it not so. If you think this issue does not affect you, please think through this carefully.
See the summary below on Issue 2. Listed at the end are several other resources that provide you with short histories of how Americans initiated local voting when they left England for America, and how we lost it. Also, there are a few resources that you will find other communities, not just all over Ohio now, but other states are facing the same issues.
Chad Callender, Treasurer – 1021 E. Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio, 43205 – 614.300.0529 – Stand Up@ohiorights.org
Reasons to Vote No On Issue 2
Issue 2 is a proposed amendment to the Ohio Constitution that will appear on the ballot in the November 2015 general election. Initiated by the Ohio General Assembly as House Joint Resolution 4 (HJR4), the stated intent of Issue 2 is to thwart passage of the “Marijuana Legalization Amendment” sponsored by the Responsible Ohio PAC, due to its approach toward marijuana cultivation (allowing only 10 growing locations in Ohio). Issue 2 has far-reaching consequences. It could forever change the ability of “We the People” to engage in direct democracy, especially when our legislators cannot or will not.
It is important to oppose Issue 2 for the following reasons:
Issue 2 – Rushed legislation. Legislation like Issue 2 has been floated in the General Assembly for nearly a decade. But after just two weeks of debate, Ohio lawmakers passed Issue 2 on June 30, 2015, the very last day they could.
Issue 2 – Priorities misplaced. Ohio’s sick, dying and disabled have been waiting 18 years and counting for passage of a medical marijuana bill to ease their suffering. Issue 2 takes away constitutional alternatives to inaction.
Issue 2 – Passed by the party in power. The Ohio Senate and the Ohio Ballot Board – voted along strict party lines to pass Issue 2.
Issue 2 – Passed after the fact. Not only did the legislature approve Issue 2 at literally the 11th hour, passage occurred five hours after intended target, Responsible Ohio, complied with the law and submitted almost 700,000 signatures to qualify the Marijuana Legalization Amendment for the ballot.
Issue 2 – Poorly drafted and confusing. Because of its hasty passage, Issue 2 is poorly drafted and contains confusing run-on sentences that make it difficult to interpret.
Issue 2 – Nullifies marijuana legalization. Issue 2 includes the words “use of any federal Schedule I controlled substance” to nullify the Marijuana Legalization Amendment if it passes.
Issue 2 – Ruled by political appointees. Just three partisan political appointees (majority of the five-member Ballot Board) would have sole authority under Issue 2 to determine if a proposed initiative is a “violation.”
Issue 2 – Violation! If the partisan Ballot Board found a monopoly, tax rate or commercial interest somewhere in a future citizen-led initiative, the measure would be split on the ballot into two questions, the first of which would label it a “violation,” thereby biasing voters against it and decreasing the likelihood of its passage.
Issue 2 – Takes ordinary citizens out of the process. Issue 2’s confusing and difficult to interpret wording will mean that future ballot proposals will face time-consuming and costly appeals to the Ohio Supreme Court by high-paid lawyers. These exorbitant costs will take ordinary citizens out of the process, leaving only the very wealthy who can afford it.
Issue 2 – Gives power to politicians. Ohio’s citizen-led ballot initiative process is already far more cumbersome than other states. Issue 2 would make this process even more complex, taking power from the people and giving to politicians.
Issue 2 – The real reason. Issue 2 is an end-run by the Ohio legislature to make sure that no ballot initiatives influence outcome of 2016 presidential election in this key swing state; both parties will ensure that any 2016 effort fails.
Issue 2 is about far more than thwarting monopolies. Its real purpose is to quash the citizen-led ballot initiative process that has been part of the Ohio Constitution since 1912. It can be argued that these measures have been instrumental to gaining public acceptance of once controversial issues like same-sex marriage, collective bargaining and marijuana. Issue 2 will change these long standing procedures, while politicizing the process to favor the political party in power. It would require campaigns for even the most worthy causes to undergo the arduous, time consuming and multi-million dollar ballot placement process only to have three politically appointed members of the partisan Ohio Ballot Board tank the effort at the very end based solely on their interpretation of a monopoly, tax or commercial interest. Today, every issue contains at least one of these. Issue 2 is aimed at silencing lawmakers’ real opposition.
We the People
Issue 2 does much more than simply preventing monopolies from being written into the Ohio Constitution, it actually includes the possibility of 3 appointed officials having the capability to nullify a significant part of our Constitution.
Terry Lodge, a highly respected Toledo Attorney and longtime Green Party member – “The main part of Issue 2 is to give sweeping power to a committee appointed by the Secretary of State [who recently was scolded by the OH Supreme Court for single-handedly taking Medina and 2 other county initiatives off the ballot, telling him essentially that he’s NOT the king of England or America] to consign good constitutional amendments to certain death by forcing anything with economic (not merely monopoly) implications to be subjected to a two-stage vote, no other state in the country has a two-question gauntlet. Issue 2 targets only statewide constitutional amendments, but if it is passed into law, look for another ruse in the next or nearly next election which crushes the local initiative and amendment rights of cities, of zoning referenda, and of ballot measures to increase tax millage for public services like parks, zoos, libraries and schools.”
Slide show of American history of local votes and how it was lost
New Hampshire Union Leader: Network finds legislative sponsor for local land rights amendment